US beef exports trend lower - USMEF

April exports 10% lower than last year
calendar icon 16 June 2023
clock icon 2 minute read

April exports of US beef were below the very large totals posted a year ago, according to a news release from the US Meat Export Federation (USMEF).

April beef exports were 10% below last year at 111,416 mt, while value fell 18% to $859.5 million. Through the first four months of 2023, beef exports were down 8% in volume (437,910 mt) and were 21% lower in value ($3.21 billion) compared to last year’s record pace.

"With US beef supplies tightening, it’s difficult to keep pace with the remarkable export totals posted in the first half of 2022, but exports continue to account for a similar share of production as last year’s record," said USMEF president and CEO Dan Halstrom. "The rebound in travel and tourism – which is now gaining momentum in Asia – and related foodservice opportunities continue to support beef demand. In some countries we have also seen a recent easing of the inflationary pressure on consumers’ discretionary income."

Halstrom added that for both beef and pork exports, it is imperative that West Coast port terminal operators reach a contract agreement with longshoremen.

"While there has been no formal strike or lockout, sporadic work stoppages on the West Coast are a major concern for exporters and their international customers," Halstrom said. "This is especially true for companies shipping chilled beef or pork to Asia. For that business, reliability and timeliness are paramount."

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